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Although recent figures have shown Europe is ahead of the US in broadband supply, it has been suggested that more still needs to be done.

Commenting in the Times, Bernhard Warner suggests that despite a number of highlights demonstrated by the European Commission's i2010 report, too many people are still unable to connect to broadband services.

One of the principal findings of the report was that the number of people using the internet in Europe had exceeded 100 million - more than America and Canada combined.

"But the accomplishments mask yet again the vexing problem of the digital divide: 40 million EU citizens are still not online," Mr Warner comments.

He notes that in Italy, just one-third of people have access to broadband, while in Greece and Romania that figure is even lower.

Finally, he adds, there is still a lot that needs to be done in terms of research and investment - in fibre optic broadband networks for example - before Europe can be seen as a global technology superpower.

In the report, the UK was identified as one of the best performing European countries in terms of broadband provision, with above average results in nearly all measurements.

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